This is the fifth (and final) WHA set that O-Pee-Chee would produce. The WHA would survive for one last season–1978-79–before being absorbed by the NHL but no cards were made. I started pursing this set as part of a 1977-78 O-Pee-Chee master set (NHL, WHA, and Glossy.) This is the first set I’ve actually finished. Minor, yes, but I’m still pleased with myself. 🙂
As with most of these sets, this one is small, only 66 cards. (The 1976-77 set had 132.) This includes a checklist and a special, commemorative card of Gordie Howe’s 1000th professional goal. I love this card. The design is funky, childish even–it almost looks like a book order sticker or mark–but I still love it. Ditto the facsimile signature, all-plexiglass boards in the background. If only Gordie was wearing a Whalers jersey. It’s his penultimate card as an active player, he’d appear in the 1979-80 O-Pee-Chee/Topps set before hanging it up for a second and final time in 1980. Don’t forget, he was a rookie with the Red Wings in 1946.
Nice little write up on the back but no stats? I love the shadowed 9 background.
Some other highlights from the set:
#8 — Real Cloutier
The greatest logo of all-time.
The photo enlarger had to be broken at the O-Pee-Chee art department that day.
He’s the second of three Hall of Famers in this set.
#28 — Dave Dryden
Great Spider-manesque mask, Dave.
#38 — Richard Brodeur
Great studio shot. I love the look of old, all-brown pads.
#41 — John McKenzie
I had no idea Pie Face played for the Whalers. How did I not know this?
#50 — Bobby Hull
This is also Bobby’s next to last card.